With a little motivation from Dawn at Our Greatest Desire I decided to do another round of Whole30 before I go to Italy next month. She set up an awesome closed Facebook group for a few other bloggers/friends that are also doing it to share recipes, thoughts, and so on. It’s been really fun to have other people to share this with besides my husband.
So far things are going really well. Having some go-to recipes to rely on has made things a lot easier than last time so far. The only difference for me is that this time I have not given up caffeine. I have started drinking Americanos instead of my normal beloved vanilla latte, literally just to avoid the withdrawal headaches. I tried the first day to go without and ended up nearly getting a migraine. I will say that I am down to 1 shot of expresso per day which is a huge improvement. The fact that I don’t actually enjoy the Americano is helping me cut way back. Otherwise the sugar withdrawal has not been nearly as bad as last time. I will attribute that to the fact that I have eaten WAY less processed food since finishing my first Whole30. I have definitely been feeling exhausted the past few days which is pretty normal at this point. I am hoping in another week I will be back to having great energy. I also need to start doing more regular and more intense exercise. This week has been insane with work and my stepson’s sports and by the time I get home, make dinner, juice, and clean up and am ready for bed. It is my goal to start again with running this weekend.
I have heard from a few friends that doing Whole30 for a second time can actually be harder than the first time because mentally you can find more reasons to veer off of the path. In the name of full disclosure I had a trip planned to Oregon on days 22 and 23, and it will be almost impossible for me to be 100% during those two days. While I don’t plan to cheat, I will be giving myself a break considering the options I will have for some meals will be limited. The people we are visiting and staying with are actually vegetarians meaning they get most of their protein from things that I cannot have on Whole30. With that said, I actually have not found it hard to stay within the guidelines. I actually like having established rules for something like this. I do well with drawing a clear line between what is on the plan and what is not. I also know that there are situations that you have to just give yourself a break. I think there is a huge difference between cheating and being understanding of the situation you are in and cutting yourself some slack.
Today I had a work lunch at a chain restaurant. There was literally nothing on the menu that I could order that would comply, but knowing this ahead of time I packed a very small container of homemade salad dressing (olive oil, balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, and a squeeze of lemon). I ordered a salad with no dressing and asked them to hold the wontons. This particular salad came with grilled chicken, and it is very common for a chain restaurant’s chicken to be comprised of more than just chicken (IE preservatives and probably sugar). I could have ordered it sans chicken, but I would have been starving an hour later because I need protein with my meals. I literally made the best choice possible in the situation, and I am not going to sweat it over a few ounces of chicken.
Had I ordered dessert, or a soda, or gobbled up the Reece’s peanut butter cups hiding in my desk drawer….well that would be making a conscious decision to cheat.
During my first Whole30 I had to eat at Five Guys Burgers for another work lunch. I literally ordered 2 plain burgers with grilled mushrooms, tomato, and wrapped in lettuce. While I am positive there were unauthorized ingredients in that meal, I did the best I could and at the end of the 30 days I still felt great. I think a lot of people look at the 30 days thinking “I can’t do this because of…..”. I think you have to go in thinking I am going to do this 100%, and when you are put in one of those situations you just do the very best you can and move on. Don’t let your social and professional obligations scare you away.
With that said, during our first Whole30 we had to have dinner at someone’s house and they served clam chowder as the main course with a side of fruit and bread. This was probably the worst situation I was in and I declined the soup and just ate fruit. They were very understanding of why we weren’t eating (it was a large group of people having dinner), but I can definitely see where this would be very awkward.
If you are looking to radically take control of your eating habits I really recommend trying Whole30. It seems really overwhelming and crazy, but it is so worth it.